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What Makes a Public Chain Stand Out in 2023?

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What Makes a Public Chain Stand Out in 2023?

February 21
10:30 2023

As the most important infrastructure in the crypto field, public chains have always been leading the development of the crypto market. With the continuous improvement of the ecology of DeFi, GameFi, NFT and others, more and more applications are running on public chains. As the representative of public chains, Ethereum’s problems of low efficiency, congestion and high fees and storage costs are increasingly prominent. Therefore, in recent years, there has been a trend to try to find the best balance between scalability, security and decentralization. After the efforts of a large number of excellent teams, many brilliant public chains have emerged, which have made great breakthroughs in performance and laid a technical foundation for the vigorous development in the crypto field.

As displayed in the statistics of DefiLlama, at the beginning of 2020, the TVL share of ETH was as high as 95%, and dropped to 59.4% by 2023 with the rise of new public chains. The newcomers have improved conditions for the development of DApps and thus have quickly gained market recognition.

How do top public chains innovate?

Consensus mechanism:

A consensus mechanism determines the security and operational efficiency of a blockchain system. The proof of work (POW) mechanism adopted by Bitcoin ensures the integrity of the entire network, but it is inefficient. The proof of stake (POS) adopted by Ethereum 2.0 and the delegated proof of stake (DPOS) adopted by EOS improve the performance of their systems to some extent at the expense of security and decentralization. In order to improve the scalability, new public chains have made unique innovations in terms of consensus mechanism.

Solana: For the purpose of a better scalability, Solana has improved its consensus protocol and network node communication mode by introducing an original consensus mechanism called Proof of History (POH), under which each node has its own clock to record timestamps and add data structures for each transaction. All nodes on the network track events through the encrypted clock, rather than wait for other validators to verify transactions. Absence of a centralized and accurate time source in Solana’s network can reduce workload and improve throughput.

BFMeta: Based on analyses of the pros and cons of various consensus mechanisms, BFMeta has come up with a new mechanism that combines Delegated Proof of Participation (DPOP), Transaction Proof of Work (TPOW) and Practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance (PBFT). The participation-based hybrid, which is endowed with service attributes of POS, the high efficiency of DPOS, and the full participation of PBFT, can prevent malicious attack behavior at a low cost. Under this innovative mechanism, participating nodes not only need to provide proof of stake, but also need to provide proof of participation, The activities of each participating node on the network increase its participation to a certain extent, which not only makes the system more secure and scalable, but also promotes the participation of each node.

APTOS: It adopts the DiemBFT mechanism (renamed AptosBFT) to achieve better performance. It is tested to be able to ensure stable operation of the system even when one third of the validators fail. Compared with Solana’s leader rotation mechanism, Aptos allows the number of nodes reaching the threshold to participate in consensus and validation to reduce the impact of a single node failure on the network, and to improve the security of network operation.

Large block:

TPS=block size/(generating time * space occupied by each transaction)

This formula tells us that improving block capacity is the most direct way to improve the throughput of public chains. In order to improve the transaction speed of Bitcoin (BTC), in 2017, a group of miners gathered their computing power to create Bitcoin Cash (BCH) through a hard fork of BTC with the block capacity increased to 8 megabytes; and next year, Bitcoin Satoshi Vision (BCHSV), born in the BCH community, came to the world, supporting super large blocks. However, to solely expand block capacity will generally bring about security problems. Therefore, in combination with capacity expansion, the data structure and security mechanism must be reinvented and strengthened to comprehensively improve the system performance.

BFMeta: Amongst the current mainstream public chains, the size of a single block is basically maintained at 1 megabyte. BFMeta is the only one to adopt a large-block structure, with a single block capacity of 50 megabytes, which can accommodate 64,000 transactions, leading to its throughput up to 100,000 transactions per second. In addition, in the BFMeta system, assets of NFT, GameFi and others are able to be completely saved in a single block, which is a great technical breakthrough for modern public chains, due to its large blocks and unique data structure processing methods. At present, the trading volume of NFT is in well excess of US $20 billion, but there are major security risks. Because of the difficulty of on-chain storage and the high cost, only the ownership and transaction information of NFTs are stored on the chain, while the metadata and media data are stored on centralized servers, which means that if the servers stop operating, those NFT assets will be gone. At the moment, the innovation of BFMeta points out a new path for the development of storing NFT. An increasing number of NFTs can be forecast to get rid of the centralization dilemma and become real on-chain assets from the onset of being issued and stored on BFMeta.

NFT’s data storage structure diagram


The birth of Ethereum in July 2015 has brought the blockchain into the era of smart contract when applications in terms of loan, trading, NFT, GameFi and others emerge one after another, with increasingly high performance requirements for public chains. In recent years, there has been intense competition in the field of public chains. Under the circumstances, the more breakthroughs there are in core technologies, the more successful a public chain can be. It remains to be seen what other surprises Solana, Aptos and BFMeta will bring to developers and users.

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